IRIS Movie of the Day
At least once a week a movie of the Sun taken by NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) is posted by one of the scientists operating the instrument.
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30 Apr 2021
A Solar Reawakening Pt 2
Credit: IRIS, LMSAL/NASA, Lucas Guliano, SAO
Moving out of solar minimum means that not only can we expect to observe more powerful solar flares (such as the M class flare shown in the previous entry), but that the total number of flares observed across the solar disk will increase as well. During the month of April 2021, over 400 solar flares have been recorded. This is more than the total number of flares recorded in the entire year from June 1st 2019 to June 1st 2020; when the Sun was at the lowest point of the solar cycle. In fact, more solar flares were recored in just the 72 hour timeframe from April 21st to April 24th than in the entire 6 month timeframe from June 2019 to the end of December 2019! Over 25 flares were produced from AR12817 alone during this 72 hour window, many of which were at least a C class level event. While the above video may not show any of those more powerful events from the region, we can see that AR12817 never fully died down before it left our field view and continued producing energetic events even as it rotated around the disk. As we move toward the solar maximum in 2025, we can expect to see more active regions such as this one that continuously churn out flares and other interesting solar events.